Hourly wage is great. Coworkers are lovely, managers are fantastic. Employees get a 50% off discount on all items, and the amount of things we’re able to take home for free after the sell-by date is... up is incredible.
Contracts tend to be part-time, handy for students looking to balance work and school, but definitely a con for people looking to work enough to make a living. Career progression is limited.
Working for a privately held company means focusing on what's best for clients, employees, and the organization in the long term (i.e. not shareholders). I have worked for startups, non-profits,... privately held, family-owned, and publicly held companies. Privately held is the way to go! Sephora is serious about work life balance. Many companies claim they are, but aren't. In my (large) division, you will get coached if you start sending emails out at night. At the end of the workday we stop and respect that everyone has an important life to get back to (kids, loved ones, pets, friends). In most cases whatever seems urgent can usually wait until the start of work tomorrow. We currently come to the office 2 days a week (with the understanding a 3rd day might be needed if the business needs it...I have yet to see that happen). If you need to work from home for an additional day occasionally, your boss is typically more than fine with it. We work hard, we stay focused, and we trust each other. When the work day ends, we stop! There is a very strong promote-from-within culture for openings. Internal openings are posted to employees first. Career development conversations are held quarterly and built upon (not discussed just once a year in a performance review and forgotten about). Our division does regular skip level meetings (i.e. with your boss' boss). This holds each leader accountable, and encourages you to treat your direct reports as your internal client (not just as your employees). If you treat your employees well, your bosses will hear about it from them (and if you don't, you would promptly hear about that, too). Our salaries are quite competitive (as more companies start to share their salary ranges, you can verify this for yourself). We focus more on a large bonus than merit increases. Our VPs, SVPs, and C-suite are excellent. Our CEO compliments workers regularly after meetings (never seen any other CEO do that) and the spirit of recognition flows down from other leaders, too. My favorite thing about Sephora is being surrounded by smart co-workers who are genuinely interested in collaborating and working together to get the job done!
None that I can think of (couldn't say the same for all of my past companies)!