Bon Karma: an avant-garde and inspiring graphic design cooperative

Bon Karma is the result of a professional chemistry between Marianne Girard and Sarah Dufour. With the same values ​​and beliefs, they decided to take the plunge in 2019 by founding Bon Karma, a positive impact graphic design cooperative, with the aim of putting people at the center of decision-making.

The work collaboration model is increasingly present in Quebec. There are all kinds of cooperatives, ranging from a nursery to a financial institution. The idea is mainly to emphasize the rights of every employee by being the holder and owner of the organization. The chosen structure will automatically create a relationship of trust.

Good karma in the cooperative landscape

Bon Karma is a cooperative specialized in branding and artistic direction that brings creative people together. Over the years, the cooperative has found a place for itself in the community. Indeed, it does not work like a classic studio, as participatory workshops are set up with its clients.

The purpose of this exercise is to nurture and improve all ideas to better understand the nature of the project. Write down the concept, vision and wishes of the client to create a mirror effect. “Customers have told us time and time again that they have finally heard, heard, seen, thinker, co-creators, and we have found that this facilitates the development of greater confidence in the autonomous creative process that follows.”

Participatory workshop for the branding of a new studio. Courtesy: good karma.

Bon Karma fully supports its client, from idea to integration on the website. Thanks to its expertise and its versatility, the chicken coop can play on all fronts by conceptualizing graphic decoration on signage spaces.

In order to meet all the needs of its customers, the coop has created a list of experts with whom it works. That is why Marianne and Sarah look for photographers, strategists and programmers for each project. Moreover, Victor Audet has been with them in their adventure for several months now. Thanks to their know-how in the field of accounting and management, they can be supported on a daily basis with numerous requests.

Bon Karma: an avant-garde and inspiring graphic design cooperative
The Good Karma Team.

How does co-op work at Bon Karma?

Each project is managed from A to Z by the two founders who fulfill the role of designer and have several hats at the same time. A co-creation is set up to facilitate exchanges and teamwork. This working method enables them to challenge each other and to perform together to take the project as far as possible. “By doing it this way, we give meaning to what we do. What we like the most is to participate in all stages of the birth and to work together.”

The choice of projects is not arbitrary. A first contact with the customer arises from a common good quiz that was sent to him. Depending on the nature of the project, the two founders decide together whether to do business or not. They are based on criteria that are dear to them, including respect for their common values ​​and valuing the person behind the project.

Bon Karma: an avant-garde and inspiring graphic design cooperative
Achievement of good karma.

The keys to success

It’s no surprise that word of mouth makes up 90% of the young coop’s means of communication. Client referrals help in approaching new contracts. Since the pandemic, Bon Karma has faced restrictions on physical dating. With more than one trick up its sleeve, the cooperative has been able to adapt to new realities and come up with original ideas. She is currently also producing her real demo to reach even more new customers. At the same time, Bon Karma’s Instagram page, followed by several subscribers, highlights all their achievements.

The prices are also a boost for the reputation of the cooperative. As a member of the Coop network, Bon Karma has won three awards and grants (PME MTL, RISQ’s Coup de Cœur Award and Foundation Award for Education in Cooperation and Mutuality), enabling it to achieve new goals. †Networks, networks and networks are important for the cooperative, which is still new in the social economy. Bon Karma is also very open to collaborating with other cooperatives on larger projects and to pooling.”

Bon Karma: an avant-garde and inspiring graphic design cooperative
Achievement of good karma.

The objectives behind the creation of a coop

The aim of a cooperative is to increase the social economy in order to create work for all members. Small cooperatives, non-profit organizations or organizations do not always have the financial means to hire designers. One of Bon Karma’s goals is to provide quality to those who don’t always have access to it. “For us, this is a way of recognizing the efforts of NPOs, cooperatives and small businesses working for change, a path not without pitfalls and often with less financial resources.”

In addition to this commitment to the social economy and collective well-being, Bon Karma wants mores to develop in the employee’s place within the company. “More and more designers are questioning their real desires in a desire for change. We believe that every individual has the right to thrive in their work and in any collaboration, within a healthy, rewarding and inspiring context.

Bon Karma: an avant-garde and inspiring graphic design cooperative
Achievement of good karma.

As for her field of activity, she would really like design studios to rethink their structure and more easily adopt the horizontal model. It is also for this reason that slow entrepreneurship (entrepreneurship while listening to your needs and desires) is starting to take off in certain professions.

The name Bon Karma will probably find more and more resonance in the world of design and cooperatives. Thanks to the efforts of the two founders, the vision of entrepreneurship will continue to evolve. The role and involvement of employees in decision-making is gradually becoming normal. In any case, this is the message that Marianne and Sarah want to convey with their innovative and inspiring model.

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