Contrary to popular belief Team Rocket is comprised of hundreds of individuals and not simply Jessie, James, and Meowth. These three have been popularized at "Team Rocket" since they are constant recurring characters in the anime and they have a catchy motto. But this lethal organization is not made of all goofy and incompetant characters no matter how charming they are. However, according to the games, they are regarded as a step higher than Rocket Grunts. (as seen to the left.)
We are not sure in what time period Team Rocket was officially established but we do know that they have been around for quite a while and are a rather notorious organization. People are usually afraid of them, in the game, due to their ruthlessness. We also do not know when Giovanni created the group, or if he did. We know that he is their Boss but was the position handed down to him? If not, when did he create this organization and for what cause? We know that Team Rocket exists for two reasons: 1) Make Money 2) Steal Valuable Pokemon.
We know now that there is also a hierarchy inside the Team Rocket organization that is not explained in the anime. In Generation 1 games it seems that organization is run completely by Giovanni himself with only grunts under him, which is an amazing feat. But after Giovanni left after being defeated three times by "Red", he leaves and behind him we see are the series of executives and administrators. We first meet the general Rocket executives in Pokemon Crystal. They have no names but we see that the Male Executives are made to resemble Giovanni in dress.
It is not until Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver where we meet the Rocket Executives and see they they have names and identities. The first is Executive Proton. He is met first in the Slowpoke Well and seems to be the operator and coordinator of this particular scheme. Team Rocket had decided to capture Slowpoke from the well and cut off their tails and sell them. The Slowpoke tails make a delicious treat and would fetch a very hefty price.
The next two Executives are Petrel and Ariana who are both first met in the Team Rocket Headquarters underneath Mahogany Town in Johto. Petrel is known for being rather goofy and, for lack of a better word, weird. He does various impersonations as well. For example, when you first meet him he is dressed as Giovanni and the second meeting he impersonates the Radio Tower administrator. Ariana, however, is just the tough female executive. She was the one who was heading the operations at the HQ and was sorely defeated. She, along with Petrel and Proton, appear again in the Radio Tower, the last place where the hero meets Team Rocket in this version of the game.
After defeating all three executives the hero then meets the Team Rocket Administrator, Archer. Archer had not actually taken Giovanni's place, even though he oversees all actions and is currently the head of the organization. He never really wanted to overthrow Giovanni, instead, all of their schemes through the game were concoted to actually find Giovanni and lure him out of hiding. In the Radio Tower, they were attempting to transmit a special broadcast for their beloved Boss and each executive and grunt, after being defeated, longed for Giovanni's return.
To Team Rocket, Giovanni was their symbol of Power. He must have also acted like a caretaker for them and a role model. Upon being defeated, Giovanni was to ashamed to face them, how could they look up to him now? It shows the relationship he had with his organization as even the Administator had wanted to bring him back. We know also that Giovanni, being the heart of Team Rocket, had led them to be successful and feared for many years. This is something that Team Galactic, Team Aqua, and Team Magma all lack.